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Sample ISAW Press Release


International Irlen Syndrome Awareness Week Brings Light Sensitivity Out of the Shadows

Global Activities and Events Planned for October 15-19, 2018

Long Beach, CA (July 5, 2018) – The Irlen® Institute announces that the fifth annual International Irlen Syndrome Awareness Week will take place from October 15-19, 2018. Approximately 15% of the general population suffers from Irlen Syndrome, the brain’s inability to process visual information, affecting daily functioning. Individuals of all ages and ethnicities may experience Syndrome symptoms, which include light sensitivity, headaches or migraines, difficulty or discomfort when reading, eye-strain, and distorted print text or environment.

Irlen Syndrome affects huge sectors of the population, but is not yet identified by standard educational or medical tests. The Awareness Week will draw attention to staggering numbers: 46% of individuals with reading and learning difficulties, 30% of people with ADHD and autism, and approximately 15% of the general population struggle with Irlen Syndrome. Unfortunately, most of these sufferers remain unaware of the true source of their problems. Irlen Syndrome has also been linked to brain injury, chronic headaches and migraines.

The Institute’s Founder Helen Irlen says, “Irlen Syndrome is more common than heart disease or asthma, and affects daily quality of life in serious ways. By increasing awareness, we hope to move away from costly misdiagnoses and help sufferers access readily available solutions.”

Failure to identify and treat Irlen Syndrome can have severe consequences, ranging from academic and workplace failure or ongoing physical and emotional symptoms, to increased likelihood to enter the criminal justice system. International Irlen Syndrome Awareness Week highlights the importance and ease of correctly identifying and treating Irlen Syndrome.


The public is asked to learn and share information about Irlen Syndrome through the Week’s webinars, lectures, free mini-screenings for Irlen Syndrome, and by raising awareness on social media. A “Turn Out the Lights” event Tuesday, October 16 at 10a.m. local time asks supporters everywhere to turn out their fluorescent lights for one minute in support of Irlen Syndrome sufferers. There will be a link on the Irlen Institute  website for participants to make their mark on our BLACK OUT map! Complimentary Irlen® self-tests are also available online at


The Irlen® Institute works in cooperation with nonprofits and other organizations in the United States and around the world to facilitate prompt diagnosis, treatment and care of individuals with Irlen Syndrome. Partners include the Irlen Syndrome Foundation and The Semper Fi Fund. A full list of affiliated organizations may be found on the Irlen® website.


The Irlen® Institute is dedicated to identifying and helping individuals suffering from visual processing disorder, or Irlen Syndrome. Irlen® offers a range of research-supported solutions for sufferers, using proprietary color technology to immediately correct visual perception. Helen Irlen and the Irlen® Method have been featured in 60 Minutes, Good Morning America, BBC, ABC Worldwide News with Peter Jennings, NBC News, National Geographic and numerous TV shows around the world. Today, more than 170 Irlen®-affiliated clinics and thousands of certified screeners are available to identify Irlen Syndrome worldwide. For more information about the Irlen® Institute and International Irlen Syndrome Awareness Week or to find the practitioner nearest you, please visit


Sandra Tosta, PhD